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E-M:/ Deer - Threat to Michigan's natural communities!

Enviro-Mich message from "Tim Flynn" <tflynn@freeway.net>


This link is to a story on the effect of deer management in Wisconsin,  it
quotes Don Waller, botanist with the Univ of Wisconsin, Madison.


These problems Dr Waller identifies are the same in Michigan, where out of
control, and likely illegal, DNR deer policy, is driving many plant
communities from the landscape.

The DNR is now setting deer management goals for the coming hunting season,
all who care should call or write to  John Urbain, Wildlife, (517) 373-9403,
PO Box 30028, Lansing, MI 48909.

Tell John to set deer density goal at a level that will protect native plant
communities, as is required by NRC policy #2007.   Let them know someone
cares about more than stuff you can shoot at.

Below is the press release the DNR put out on the NRC discussion schedule
for Deer management issues, you'll notice they don't seen to give a damn
about native habitat, just TB and lot of targets.

CONTACTS: John Urbain, Wildlife, 517-373-1263
Teresa Gloden, NRC, 517-373-2352


LANSING--The Michigan Department of Natural Resources'
Natural Resources Commission is seeking public comment on
the 1999 deer season regulations at their monthly Commission
meetings through June, and at one extra meeting in the Upper
"Deer management in Michigan has to stay current with
biological and social issues, and public comment is an
integral component of the decision-making process," said
Keith Charters, Chairperson for the Commission.  "We expect
the top issues to be deer baiting, buck harvest
restrictions, captive wildlife, feeding, and Bovine TB
Rebecca Humphries, Wildlife Division Chief, said biologists
began the 1999 planning process even before the 1998 deer
season opened. "Setting the deer season regulations is a
long process that involves public input and review," she
said. "We used public comment from hunters in the field last
November to finalize the 1999 issues."
Baiting deer is the top issue identified by the DNR Wildlife
Division Management Team.  "The tuberculosis outbreak in
northeastern Lower Michigan has made it imperative baiting
in this part of the state be discussed by the Commission as
it relates to potential spread of this disease," Humphries
In developing potential strategies for NRC consideration,
the DNR sought to reduce the number of face-to-face contacts
among feeding deer.  According to Humphries, there are
several management options to consider, in light of the
preliminary results from a Michigan State University study
that showed the five-gallon limit on baiting substantially
increased the number of face-to-face contacts between
animals.  Among these options, the Department will consider
prohibiting the use of any bait for deer hunting in the
northeastern Lower Peninsula. Another option the Department
will consider is maintaining the existing five-gallon limit,
and continue to evaluate deer behaviors during the 1999 deer
season. "The disease outbreak in Michigan has caused us to
reevaluate the notion that baiting is only a social
problem," Humphries said. "There may be real biological
issues associated with baiting deer and the potential for
other disease outbreaks when animals are concentrated at
bait sites."
The preliminary research findings and management options
will be discussed with the Commission at its February 10-11
meeting in Lansing.
The NRC will be seeking public comment on hunting over bait,
along with comment on captive wildlife issues. The following
are DNR priorities for the 1999 deer season, along with
meeting dates associated with those priorities:

* Evaluate regulations to assist in eradicating bovine
tuberculosis.  Apply the latest research and survey
information and program evaluation for:
* Bait (February/March)
* Disease Control Permits/Protocol (February/March)
* Season dates, structure, harvest goals (May/June)
* Evaluate conditions which may contribute to bovine
tuberculosis outbreaks elsewhere:
* Statewide baiting issues (March/April)
* Feeding restrictions (March)
* Evaluate the issues associated with captive deer and elk
* Science-based review of issues and problems related to
fences and enclosed wildlife (March)
* Evaluate deer herd size and structure:
* Research efforts on herd goals (April)
* Quality deer management guidelines (March)

Meeting dates, times and locations, along with topics to be
addressed are as follows:

February Natural Resources Commission Meeting (February 10-

Information Items: Use of Bait Within the Bovine
Tuberculosis Area Disease Control Permit Modifications

Location: Lansing Center, 333 E. Michigan, Lansing.  Public
comment is welcome beginning at 4:30 p.m. on February 10.

Upper Peninsula Public Meeting on Wildlife Regulations
(March 6)

Location: Ramada Inn, 412 W. Washington, Marquette from
1:00-5:00 p.m.

March Natural Resources Commission Meeting (March 10-11)

Information Items: Use of Bait Outside the Bovine
Tuberculosis Area Quality Deer Management Guidelines Report
on Enclosures/Fences

Potential Action Items: Use of Bait Within the Bovine
Tuberculosis Area Disease Control Permit Modifications

Location: Kellogg Center, Harrison Road, Michigan State
University, East Lansing.  Public comment is welcome
beginning at 4:30 p.m. on March 10.  The public meeting will
be held jointly with the Commission of Agriculture, which is
the lead agency for feeding restrictions.

April Natural Resources Commission Meeting (April 7-8)

Information Items: Deer Management Unit Boundaries
Report on Deer Herd Goals and Objectives

Potential Action Items: Use of Bait Outside the Bovine
Tuberculosis Area

Location: Four Points Sheraton, 4960 Towne Centre Road,
Saginaw.  Public comment is welcome beginning at 4:30 p.m.
on April 7.

May Natural Resources Commission Meeting (May 12-13)

Information Items: Special Deer Season Dates

Potential Action Items: Deer Management Unit Boundaries

Location: Radisson Hotel-Lansing, 111 N. Grand Avenue,
Lansing.  Public comment is welcome beginning at 4:30 p.m.
on May 12.

June Natural Resources Commission Meeting (June 9-10)

Potential Action Items: Special Deer Season Dates

Location: Harbor View Marina, 400 S. Rath Avenue, Ludington.
Public comment is welcome beginning at 4:30 p.m. on June 9.

The NRC invites interested citizens to make comments and
recommendations at the meeting, and public appearances may
be scheduled by calling Teresa Gloden at 517-373-2352.
Persons with disabilities needing accommodations for
effective participation in the meeting should contact Gloden
at the number above to request mobility, visual, hearing or
other assistance.

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